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How to unblock your nose in 2 minutes.

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Unblock your nose in 2 minutes

Pinch your nose around both nostrils and walk as fast as you can whilst keeping your mouth closed all the time and holding your breath. If brisk walking is not possible, pinch your nose and rather nod your head forwards and backwards quickly whilst holding your breath. Once you feel a strong urge to breathe, sit down with your spine totally straight – you are about to take your first breath.

The next step is vitally important. After you release your nose, you are to resume normal breathing but ensure you keep your mouth closed. Resist the urge to take a huge gasp of air, instead, take a smaller inhale and then relax all of your muscles during exhalation, especially your upper chest and other respiratory muscles. Make another smaller inhalation, and again relax. With each inhalation, practice this reduced or shallow breathing while remaining relaxed.

How does it work?

When you hold your breath and perform repetitive physical movements, all the cells of your body, including the airways, lungs, and blood, accumulate more carbon dioxide [CO2]. CO2 is a powerful vasodilator of smooth muscle which lines the sinuses, bronchi and bronchioles (air passages). A vasodilator is a substance that causes smooth muscle to relax thus dilating the tubular passages it lines.

Upon the airways dilating there is quick relief from a blocked nose. Additional effects are due to the dilation of arteries and arterioles when arterial CO2 is increased. CO2 induced vasodilation improves blood and oxygen supply to your nose.

Breathing tip

You should breathe through your nose rather than your mouth. Your nose has an inherent filtering system. Fine hairs inside the nose trap foreign particles found in the air preventing any obstruction to your airways. The exception is during intense physical exertion where you are compelled to breathe through your mouth in order to oxygenate your tissues adequately.

Many people find themselves breathing through their mouth whilst sleeping at night. In the mornings, the mouth is very dry and the voice is often deep and croaky. Whilst it might sound dangerous at first, taping your mouth shut at night can correct this problem over time. You can read more about mouth taping and how it can help you here.

Learning to breathe solely through your nose at night ensures your air passages stay sufficiently lubricated throughout sleep. The wind tunnel effect created by unnecessary mouth breathing often causes snoring but also, ironically, decreases the mount of oxygen to your tissues.

There are many myths surrounding breathing, most notably that deep breathing is good for you. You can learn more about these myths by visiting the normal breathing website. In the meantime, when you next visit your health practitioner, why not quiz him or her on their knowledge of deep versus shallow breathing?

*DISCLAIMER: This discussion does not provide medical advice. The
information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and
other material contained in this discussion are for informational
purposes only. The purpose of this discussion is to promote broad
consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not
intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis
or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other
qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding
a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health
care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay
in seeking it because of something you have read in this blog.

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